religion v gay – the sisterly debate

my family is religious. i am gay. generally, we get along great – i don’t have an opinion about how they live and, for the most part, they withold their opinions about how i live.

the other day, i posted a link to my blog about the civil unions and an interesting conversation with my sister followed. i’ve cut and pasted it below:

my original post

“be gay, but not in front of me”
-ACL/LNP

http://gaybymama.com/2012/06/12/be-gay-but-not-in-front-of-me/

friend 1:

Like, I don’t mind straight people… Some of my best friends are straight people. I don’t mind…I’m not heterophobic. As long as they don’t touch me or be straight in front of me… Cos that’s like, really gross

friend 2:

Oh that’s messed up :/

friend 3:

It is so rediculous 😦

friend 4:

It makes me mad, and it’s not nearly as ‘close to home’ for me. Channel nine news just reported that protestors were “happy” with the decision…

friend 5:

Haha friend 1! I’m thinking about touching u. In a straight non sexual way. Giving u germs. But on a serious note, this sucks. One day things will be right. Sorry you have to deal with this shit. Be as super gay as you like in front of me. Xxx

friend 6:

So true! Well said!! I don’t understand what it has to do with Christian beliefs anyway- there are so many different religions out there to start with who all have different rituals etc but when will the government wake up that being gay has nothing to do with religions!!!!!!!!!!!????? They are in no way shape or form related?!

me:

It is just so frustrating to have other people decide how my relationship will be recognized. Oh well, time to focus on Ms Gillard and get this whole debate finalised at the federal level.

sister:

friend 6, they bring up Christian beliefs because the marriage ceremony was initially sanctioned by God; created by Him. It was making covenants to each other before God and your fellow beings. If you take God out of it then you, by default, take the marriage ceremony out of the situation (unless you just want to take His principle and leave Him out of it). All you’re left with then is a legally recognized partnership which the same-sex couple community already have. Anyway, I shall stop at the expense of further offending those I love. It’s just a very hard and sensitive topic for all… not just the gay community and a lot of peoples rights are at stake within AND outside the community.

me:

sister, 5 words: separation of religion and state. But even if you forget the religious v gay aspect – the state consulted with ONE group on an issue that does not affect them and made a decision based on the ‘feelings’ of that one group. It just works out conveniently that in this situation you agree. But what if the government decided to outlaw church on a Sunday because it offended Muslim people? My guess is you’d have a very different view of the state of politics then. In this great free country of ours we have the freedom to choose a religion and to choose how we celebrate that. the state’s role is to support the rights of ALL people, no matter their religion, race, gender and sexuality.

friend 5:

Über likes.

friend 6:

You hit the nail on the head

sister:

the laws of this great free country of ours were founded on a constitution that is rich in Christian moral standards. We are a Christian country- easter, Christmas etc. I’m just saying it’s hard for a government to just change the centuries old laws and ignore their foundations. Plus you’re requiring them to change the core definition of marriage itself. You’re asking a lot and it will take a lot of time. I just wonder if you really know the ramifications of such a law being passed?? You guys will get to have a certificate but the rights of others will be jeapardised in a much for damaging way. I find it interesting that you care so much about a marriage certificate anyway….most people in the rest of the world don’t. Anythings goes as long as they are happy right? Anyway, this is a topic that we will NEVER agree on. you’ll keep fighting your battle and I’ll keep fighting for what I feel to be right and true.

in the end, if you want to separate religion and state, then why not fight for the removal of marriage all together which is a religious union? And just have legal unions? That way no-one will feel like they’re missing out…

me:

Marriage is only religious if a religious ceremony is undertaken. As far as I am aware a marriage application does not ask you what religion you are. And the stats show less than 50% of wedding ceremonies are religious. As far as the state is concerned, marriage and religion is separate. And no one is asking any religion to change. No one is asking any religion to change their wedding ceremonies or their beliefs.
This debate is not even about marriage, it is about equality. In the eyes of the law you and I have equal relationships when it comes to tax, super etc. we are equal in every way except you can get married to the person you love and I can’t. No matter what your beliefs, from a human rights perspective that is discrimination. They can call it whatever they want – marriage/unions, whatever – as long as it is legally equal for all legally equal relationships.
And governments change century old laws all the time – you are allowed to vote, your husband doesn’t own you, indigenous Australians are no longer considered flora and fauna. Society grows, our knowledge evolves and the laws change with it. Marriage equality will happen, and sooner than you think, and when it does I can GUARANTEE you that it will not affect you in any way whatsoever. Unless you choose to let it. Canada has had marriage equality for 10 years and their society has not crumbled just because they realised that marriage is about love and commitment, not gender and religion. Equality only ever strengthens societies.

friend 6:

sister what ramifications would it have on society??? Apart from the fact that we all become a little more accepting in the world and allow people equal rights? Not so long ago women weren’t even allowed in bars or to vote- the world does change, it’s sad that this is still even considered an issue in a place like Australia where we are meant to be a forward thinking country!! I can’t see how who I chose to love will affect your life in any shape or form? You don’t know me and I don’t know you so why would you worry about who I might marry? People need to judge less and accept more of people’s differences. That’s how you become a better person. I don’t tell Christians that they shouldn’t be Christians and go to church etc because it has nothing to do with me how people live their lives and what they do with it. All I am concerned about it how people treat others and I think it’s such a shame that people judge others without walking a mile in their shoes first. Acceptance is the answer of people’s difference for this world to move forward otherwise we will continue to have wars and act like two year olds wanting everything our own way- allow everyone to live their life their way- everyones journey is different- doesn’t mean one is right and one is wrong.

sister:

it’s not about judging anyone, even if i may personally see something as being morally wrong i understand that others will not have the same view on it and i cannot fault them for that, it is not my place. I am certainly not perfect in any way. What i do not understand is why you want to change marriage when civil unions are basically the same, except for maybe in Queensland where same sex cannot adopt, but even this i must say i agree with, children should have the right to both a mother and a father when possible. i understand that homosexuals may feel somewhat segregated because of their not being able to be married and i can even sympathise to a point. if you believe that marriage is just based merely on love and commitment, then do you not agree that all relationships should have the right? such as brothers and sisters and plural marriage? if marriage is no longer between a man and a woman, then what is it? what definition can you give it? Where will these “rights” end and who will make the callls as to what is right and wrong anymore?

friend 6:

I am sorry but I dont think you or anyone else has any right to say that “children should have the right to both a mother and a father when possible” What children should have the right to is someone who loves them and cares for them!!!! If they are lucky enough to have ONE person in this world who loves them no matter what then that is the best gift in life! Are you saying all the families out there who have single parents, may that be through death, divorce, abusive relationships etc etc etc etc that they are worse off or something?? That makes my blood boil. Children do not know the difference between male and female until they are taught. A child views the world on what they learn and know. They do not care if you are a female or male, they just want to know that someone loves them and is there for them! I dont think anyone has the right to say what sex their parents should be, they just deserve to have somone in their life who loves them. And can I just say, at least when a gay couple have a baby you know it has been planned and will be loved!!!! Its a bit hard for a gay person to wake up and go oh shit im pregnant didnt plan that one!

me:

If our roles were reversed, would a civil union be enough for you? I think not. Near enough, is not good enough and discrimination is not equality.
Decades of biological and psychological research has proven that homosexuality in no way hinders a persons ability to raise a child. In fact, a significant piece of research actually showed that children raised by lesbian parents are actually more intelligent, more well adjusted and more emotionally stable than all other children. But then that’s just one piece of research and I’m not so full of pride or ignorance to believe my way is the only right way. But I think it is safe to say that man+woman does not = perfect parenting. The thousands of children currently in foster care would agree. Children have the right to a safe, secure and encouraging upbringing and that is achieved with good parenting. And good parenting is not decided simply by gender, or a magical combination of genders.
In my opinion, marriage should be allowed between two consenting adults. While I don’t think that brothers and sisters should be married because of the ramifications to their possible offspring, Australia does allow first cousins to marry, and does not allow adopted siblings to be married, so there are arguments for both sides. This is funny though – for a long time brothers and sisters could get married and Christian and other religions endorsed it. Again – one of those things that has evolved over the centuries. And plural marriage, well many religions have, or continue to, allow polygamy when it suited and I believe it is only the state law that stops them from doing it now.
No one decides which straight marriages are right and wrong. No one asks a wife if she’s being forced into a marriage, or the husband if he is marrying for love or money or sex. As long as you have one guy and one girl and they sign a piece of paper – hey presto, you’re married! And if they don’t like it anymore – hey presto, you’re divorced!

No one sexuality or religion owns marriage. And no one sexuality or religion should have exclusive rights to marriage. You know why – that’s DISCRIMINATION. You know what the crowds said when the right to a woman’s vote was being discussed? “if we let women vote, dogs will have a vote next!” sounds familiar.

friend 5:

I guess it could affect my marriage…. If husband turned out to be gay… And then decided he wanted to marry a man. Maybe that’s the fear some have within their own marriages……

me:

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

friend 5:

Honestly, i’d be devo for a while,. But then, I want him to be himself. True to who he is. And to be happy…. Just like I want for everyone i love.

Advertisements

4 thoughts on “religion v gay – the sisterly debate

    • eh, honestly, her words mean nothing to me. i know what she’s like. she has never done anything or been anywhere and she lives in a tiny bubble with people who agree with her, so i know she has no clue about anything other than her ‘beliefs’and ‘feelings’.

      it’s the impact her words and her attitude could have on other people, especially young gay people, that scares me.

      Like

  1. blimey. I would say I am speechless, but I have had and heard similar conversations with my mum. She recently “found god” the women used to basically be a hippy, and now she’s all conservative and uber Christian. Has totally changed her and not for the good. All of a sudden she’s like “oh but your wedding goes against everything i am being told in church” I am like why don’t you use your own brain mum, like you used too. You used to be liberal, and not have a problem, do you really believe that two people in love shouldn’t be able to marry. She paused for a considerable amount of time and then mumbled I guess not, but its still not right.

    can’t win with religious people!!

    Generally anyone from a minority group is super accepting and are usually egalitarians, we have to go through the persecution and have our rights taken away. Thats why we believe in equality and why we don’t judge. Its a shame that our families who are so privileged and lucky to have all the rights they want can’t stand up for their loved ones and fight for the little man.

    Sounds like your sister still loves you and is trying. 🙂

    Like

    • Wow! That is a hectic conversation to have with anyone.

      I come from a catholic up bringing but haven’t been to chruch now for a long time. However, my Dad is a very religious man. He still doesn’t know I’m a lesbian. I have a feeling that he will accept it but have the same view as your sister.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s